The Four Seasons in Limassol, Cyprus has been open since 1993 and is independently owned and operated by Muskita Hotels Ltd. It’s a Five Star deluxe property with 304 rooms, 6 restaurants, 4 bars, and extensive conference facilities, Shiseido Spa, a full range of sports and fitness facilities and a shopping area with exclusive boutiques, watches and jewelry. The Hotel is situated on its own sandy beach, which has been awarded with the Blue Flag (a symbol of cleanliness and safety awarded by the European Community) and is 8 kilometers East of Limassol city center.
The Four Seasons’ management is constantly looking for effective ways to build strong relations with its customers and optimize sales programs. The Hotel’s website is its important marketing tool that helps the property to attract and retain elite guests from all over the World.
Mr. Nick Aristou, the property’s Executive Director, decided to enhance the website with an online business chat solution. “Our objective was to make it easy for our customers to navigate the website,” says Mr. Aristou. “Also, we wanted to convert as many visitors into customers as possible by making it easy for them to complete bookings.”
Mr. Aristou, who has a strong technology background, did a thorough review of available products, including such market leaders as LivePerson. However, none of them matched Four Season’s specific needs. The main limitations were the lack of multilingual support, patchy compatibility with tablet users and absence of robust archival features.
Then Mr. Aristou came across LiveWebAssist, a chat solution deployed on the IceWarp site, and realized it was the perfect match. He decided to try it out on the Four Season’s site, but then found out it was not the final release yet. Still, Mr. Aristou went ahead and launched LiveWebAssist at Four Seasons’ webpage, assigning three operators to interact with customers.
From the very beginning, the Four Season’s customer service team was making the most of LiveWebAssist’s multilingual interface and Knowledgebase support features to interact with customers in English, Greek and Russian.. The property’s sales and marketing team started to see LiveWebAssist’s effect almost immediately – the bookings increased.
“LiveWebAssist contributed a lot to this on many occasions,” says Mr. Aristou. “Our analysis showed that customers booked because they were given real-time explanations through the chat service.”
Four Season’s technology team also liked LiveWebAssist’s capability to recognize returning Website visitors.
“The excellent feature helps an operator to resume the conversation from the same spot where it was ended or interrupted,” says Mr. Aristou. “That makes users spend on average 7-8 minutes on the site, a very high indicator.”
In an approach radically different form other chat products, LiveWebAsisst supports the InLine no-flash chat architecture, eliminating pop-up windows. This design allows more visitors to initiate chat sessions, because they don’t have to deal with popup blockers and assures usability for visitors from tablets like iPad or Android.
Additionally, this option gives actionable information about the visitors’ behavior.
“The operators can tell exactly where the user is on the site, so they can offer them immediate assistance, tell them where to go and answer questions with a high degree of relevancy,” says Mr. Aristou. “It’s a very useful feature.”
LiveWebAssist’s analytical capabilities helped the hotel to optimize its Internet marketing strategy.
“LiveWebAssist analytics capabilities are very good,” notes Mr. Aristou. “They are helping us to locate sources our customers are coming from. It’s a very effective tool, especially when used in conjunction with Google analytics.”
Another feature Four Seasons’ team found practical is LiveWebAssist Knowledgebase. At any point of the conversation, it allows to insert pre-approved messages (such as terms and conditions, cancellation policy, etc.) as well as URLs and graphics with a single click.
“It has been very useful, we have almost three pages of knowledgebase content now,” notes Mr. Aristou. “The option provides more professional outlook and helps to standardize responses. Operators don’t have to think about how to phrase them. In the near future, we are planning to extend the knowledgebase with images and, possibly, videos.”
According to Four Seasons’ technology team estimates, the training and ramp-up process was painless.
“The functionality of the program is simple, anybody who can use a social chat program can get accustomed to LiveWebAssist very easily,” notes Mr. Aristou.
For the support function, Four Seasons team used LiveWebAssist Direct Chat Technology, the VIP connection that gives dedicated access to key IceWarp support personnel. This option makes it possible to reach the important contacts no matter where they are – at their desktop, off-site, or on the road.
“The VIP link option has been very useful, and IceWarp support team was very prompt,” says Mr. Aristou.
Four Seasons is now planning to expand LiveWebAssist functionality.
“We are considered using it on mobile devices, and, possibly, integrating the solution with a new CRM system,” says Mr. Aristou.
In the future, the property is thinking about hiring more operators and starting to use LiveWebAssist automated translation functionality.
According to Mr. Aristou’s estimates, LiveWebAssist was showing compelling ROI from the day it was implemented.
“Just from my own observation, from the number of bookings that have been converted directly through LiveWebAssist, I can say that it has paid for itself almost immediately” says Mr. Aristou he would definitely recommend LiveWebAssist to other organizations in the hospitality industry.
“Selling hotel rooms is always a complex matter,” says Mr. Aristou. “Usually, hotel bookings for five+ star hotels are a very high-value item. It’s not a $10-20 purchase from Amazon. They are usually $5,000-6,000 per transactionand there are many issues for potential customers to understand before they actually commit to book. Anything that can give a customer greater confidence and prompt him to make a decision to buy is very valuable. LiveWebAssist gives us exactly that.”
Big W, Woolworths and Telstra provide some of the worst customer experiences in Australia, according to a Forrester Survey. These brands were among the lowest-scoring on the Forrester CX Index which failed to find any Australian brand that provides ‘excellent' customer experience.
The Australia Customer Experience Index 2015 gives an understanding of the quality of customer experience by Australia's leading companies. Looking at 58 Australian brands over eight industries, the report finds that smaller companies are leading the pack, that technology is not necessarily the answer and that Australian brands are missing the emotional connection with consumers.
50% of brands say that improving CX is their top strategic priority with 48% saying that improving CX is not a top priority but it is on their list of strategic priorities. Although no Australian brands provide ‘excellent' customer experience, the survey also found that very few brands provide ‘very poor' experience.
CyberSource announced a partnership with China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited (China Eastern). This agreement will allow China Eastern to safely accept online payments and elevate the overall customer experience.
Through this partnership, China Eastern will have access to CyberSource's fraud management tool, as well as support and expertise from CyberSource risk analysts to customise its fraud screening operations. This will significantly enable China Eastern to control its online fraud rate with the ability to accept more genuine orders with confidence, while minimising the rejection of valid ones. In turn, this will improve the customer payment experience and strengthen customer loyalty.
China Eastern ranks among the world's top five airlines in terms of the number of passengers it carries, which totals almost 90 million annually. Its flight network currently serves more than 1,057 destinations across 179 countries. Emphasising world-class customer service, the airline is recognised as one of the top 100 brands in China.
SYDNEY, September 15, 2015 — Veridian Solutions
Veridian Solutions is a long-standing software development partner for Verint in Australia with a track record of successful deployments in private, public and third sector organisations. In providing further support in the cloud, the company will now host its Verint cloud solutions within Fujitsu data centers based in Sydney and Melbourne. These provide world-class facilities and offer carrier independent, high-bandwidth access within secure and resilient environments.
Veridian Solutions' workforce optimisation suite powered by Verint includes applications such as quality management and call recording, workforce management, performance management, desktop and process analytics, coaching and elearning, as well as speech analytics.
Veridian has expertise in offering in-depth cloud solutions with more than a decade of experience in providing managed services for contact centre infrastructure customers. Of particular benefit to users today is Veridian's technical experience in integrating complementary solutions with Verint and in driving operational-level business value in business process optimisation and interaction management optimisation.
"We are now able to take Verint's market-leading, tier one workforce optimisation solutions and offer integration advantages for a new market of companies that aspire to have these technologies but could not necessarily have afforded them in the past. In particular, Veridian Cloud Workforce Management powered by Verint simplifies the complex task of forecasting and scheduling, provides performance management and elearning capabilities, and eliminates the expense and administrative burden of thick-client solutions. In addition, we'll be offering speech analytics as a service, enabling organisations to seamlessly record their data and act on the findings for real-time decision making," says Jason Hewett, general manager, Veridian Solutions.
The Frost & Sullivan Australian Unified Communications (UC) Market 2014 forecasts that by 2020, revenue contribution from hosted and cloud-based solutions will be close to that of on-premise solutions. Notes Audrey William, head of research, ICT Practice, Australia & New Zealand, Frost & Sullivan, "The hosted and cloud-based models allow vendors and channel partners to address the market directly by provisioning UC solutions from their own data centres."
Adds Michael Stelzer, vice president, Australia and New Zealand for Verint Enterprise Intelligence Solutions™, "We're pleased not only to be working with Veridian's highly-skilled team but also to have the opportunity to work with an organisation with a strong DNA in the contact centre space. It has a refreshing and dynamic approach in customising solutions to meet the individual needs of clients, making it a well-suited partner to help meet customer requirements and further the availability of our cloud-based contact centre solutions in the market."
Veridian Solutions' customers that leverage Verint technology include such leading public and private sector organisations as the Australian Red Cross Blood Service, MYOB and the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria.